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a rush for biotech parks, however will they all bloom?


Biotech rush: The Bangalore Helix biotech park, which is expected to be inaugurated in three weeks, will be the first to open among more than 20 such parks in various stages of development and concept

Bangalore: three weeks from now, the primary section of Bangalore Helix, Karnataka’s lotsdelayed biotech park and the u . s .’s seventh, will be inaugurated, according to kingdom government officials.
The park isn’t out of vicinity in a state that has 183 of the 340 biotech businesses inside the us of a. it will likely be the primary to open among more than 20 biotech parks that are in various degrees ofimprovement and conceptualization—highlighting a biotech gold rush not a lot among entrepreneurswishing to enter a enterprise that could be the following large element, however amongst real estatedevelopers and kingdom governments.
the push doesn’t make experience due to the fact professionals say biotech businesses could favor tobe placed in some geographic clusters. “every person involves us for a biotech park,” says Maharaj okay. Bhan, secretary of the department of biotechnology. “but we try now not to inspire them and factor out thetroubles in their thinking.”
It’s desirable that nation governments are nowadays contemplating know-how parks, says Bhan, butfinally, the maximum effective parks would be concentrated in some clusters, in Hyderabad, Bangalore, Pune, and a few other cities.

Biotech rush: The Bangalore Helix biotech park, that is predicted to be inaugurated in three weeks, might be the primary to open among greater than 20 such parks in diverse stages of improvement and conceptualization. (Hemant Mishra / Mint)
That’s due to the fact biotechnology wishes a network to thrive. groups need to have get admission to to investigate establishments; universities wherein biotechnology is taught and research inside the subjectis finished, and in which, at the least in some instances, beginunited statesare incubated; providercarriers who can build and manipulate biotechnology centers and facilitate era switch; and a culture that promotes collaboration among diverse tenants inside the biotechnology park.
The presence of a huge variety of biotech businesses ensures that Karnataka has at least a number ofthe ingredients required for that community. And a first-mover gain ensures that Hyderabad does too.
Hyderabad vs Bangalore
Hyderabad scored an outstanding victory over Bangalore—the 2 cities are arch-competitors on the subject of attracting investments from records era agencieswhen it started a biotech cluster known asGenome Valley in 2003. The city is now increasing its biotech base even further. Genome Valley, which hastwo stages covering round 400 acres and hosts the Shapoorji Pallonji Biotech Park and ICICIunderstanding Park, will soon have a 3rd phase—a 414-acre biotech park at Karakapatla, around 20km from Genome Valley. The third section is being developed entirely with the aid of the Andhra Pradeshbusiness development agency (APIDC).
more than 80% of land allotment is over, each within the one hundred acre unique monetary quarter(SEZ) and 314-acre non-SEZ segments (of this),” says B.R.okay. Sarma, a widespread manager at APIDC.
Will they all do well? (graphic)
Karnataka’s own 106-acre park has been behind schedule regardless of the pinnacle begin the stateenjoys inside the sector. Biotech exports from Karnakata crossed Rs1,000 crore in 2006-07, whilst India’soverall biotech exports had been Rs2,200 crore, in keeping with a survey by using the association of Biotech Led companies, a change frame and Biospectrum, a exchange magazine. “The Karnatakaauthorities, despite the fact that sluggish for a spread of motives, now has a solid plan for the park,” says G. Padmanabhan, a prominent biotechnologist at DBT, former director of the Indian Institute oftechnology and a member of the Karnataka imaginative and prescient institution on Biotechnology.
even though the homes on web site don’t look equipped, Karnataka’s IT and biotechnology secretary M.N. Vidyashankar says the first segment, constructed at a value of Rs11.76 crore, may be inaugurated in 3weeks. placed in Electronics city, it’ll residence the Human Genetics Centre and the Institute of Bioinformatics and implemented Biotechnology.
Alexandria actual estate Equities, a Pasadena, California-primarily based actual estate investment fund which has constructed nearly a hundred and seventy biotech and technology parks within the US, will then expand the following stages of the Karnataka park in affiliation with TCG actual estate, part ofKolkata-based totally TCG life Sciences (itself a part of a collection of companies promoted by way ofserial entrepreneur Purnendu Chatterjee), at an estimated price of Rs550 crore. although Alexandria CEO Joel Marcus refused to comment, Vidyashankar says the developer has promised to get more than a dozen US corporations to “installation their operations right here”. The Karnataka park, but, may haveopposition.
The state of parks
Gujarat has committed to construct the biggest single biotech park in India, unfold over 650 acres in Savali close to Vadodara. besides the country authorities, TCG actual estate, and Mumbai-based realproperty improvement company Akruti city (previously called Akruti Nirman Ltd) are the promoters of the park.
“An investment of round Rs500 crore has been committed (to this challenge) inside the subsequentthree4 years,” says Akshay Saxena, project director at Gujarat nation Biotechnology undertaking. Thatconsists of investments via the non-public developer and the fee of leasing around forty five acres of land.
“For the final place of around 600 acres, we anticipate investment of Rs2,500-three,000 crore within thenext five years,” provides Saxena. however, Gujarat continues to bewaiting for environment clearance from the Centre and SEZ notification”.
“The groups cannot start their operation, even though they’re raring to go,” consistent with Saxena.
In Maharashtra, a 103-acre worldwide Biotech Park (IBP) in Pune is already operational and the country hasextra parks covered up. “An agri-biotech park in Aurangabad and any other in Mumbai-Pune hall might bebuilt,” says Prasanta okay. Biswal, of TCG RE, which developed IBP in affiliation with Maharashtrabusiness development employer.
at the same time as the promoters say the Pune park is a “extraordinary hit”, IBP’s personal internet siteseems to be frozen in time. One announcement on the website estimates that the Indian biotech industrywill contact $2 billion in revenues via 2002 (the industry’s revenues crossed $2 billion in 2006-07). And thewebsite online does not give any statistics on tenants; it lists most effective names: Emcure prescription drugs Ltd and Shreya Biotech Pvt. Ltd.
It isn’t smooth to measure the success of parks. some massive parks remain incomplete for variousreasons while smaller ones, along with the Lucknow biotech park, aren’t simply up and strolling howeverhave managed to draw enough organizations. The Lucknow park became in reality set up by using the Union government however DBT’s Bhan does no longer want to duplicate this. He prefers that enterprisetake the initiative. however, the small 8-acre park at Lucknow has spurred biotech activities or evenattracted a few huge builders.
P.ok. Seth, leader govt of the Lucknow park, says the park has attracted greater than five US organizationsthat have installation facilities in it. greater importantly, it seems to have provided a model for futurebiotech parks with its approach of leveraging the presence of neighborhood studies institutions to drawagencies to the park.
Seth claims that actual property developer Ansal homes and Infrastructure Ltd wants to construct a 59-acre biotech park in its coming hello-tech metropolis on Lucknow-Sultanpur street and Boston fundingCorp. wants to set up a 2 hundred-acre bio-pharma and biotech park on the Lucknow-Kanpur road.
Ansal API is looking forward to its park to be notified as a special economic region.
Measuring success
Will all the biotech parks which are developing prevail? “It’s a call for and supply problem now. but if thegovernment (state or Union) is a partner, and public cash is going into such projects, then it has to decidewhether it desires to have a blanket policy of encouragement or sell pockets of excellence,” says Utkarsh Palnitkar, industry chief of health sciences at audit and consulting company Ernst and young in Hyderabad. several biotech park promoters in the u . s . a . are clients of Ernst and younger. Palnitkar saysbuilders are taking a calculated risk whilst bidding for these tasks.
The authorities, for its component, needs to study the technical capabilities of groups wishing to operatefrom the parks. Palnitkar adds: “It’s important that a technical committee examines all aspiring tenants orthere is a threat of biotechnology getting diluted.”
That doesn’t appear to be happening. Even in the third section of Genome Valley, no allotment has been made to any “distinct worldwide biotech gamers” and, in keeping with APIDC’s Sarma, “no technical committee examines the applications”. And Padmanabhan says despite the fact that he hasn’t studied all biotech parks, the “opportunity of actual property investment within the call of biotech park is actual”.
no longer each nation that has a park being developed will be successful, says TCG RE’s Biswal, who admits biotech is not just a land development pastime.
Globally, such parks have had combined effects with a number of them having a profound effect at thelocal financial system, and a few others proving damp squibs. for example, the research Triangle Park in North Carolina, US, and the Biopolis in Singapore, were very a hit. however, a 2004 study by means ofScott Wallsten of the yankee enterprise Institute for Public coverage studies, a assume tank, to assess theimpact of such parks on activity increase and challenge capital within the US, determined that oncommon this kind of park made no distinction to the vicinity’s monetary boom.
Wallsten has not up to date his examine seeing that then, but thinks that putting in place biotech parksmay prove helpful in an emerging economic system inclusive of India if it is followed by stepped forward infrastructure and exemptions from the exhausting regulations that companies might otherwiseface.
but, there may be constantly the hazard of it becoming merely a fad,” says Wallsten in an e mailinterview.
greater regularly than not it truly turns into a boondoggle for anything developer receives the construction agreement and a pleasant tax ruin for businesses that circulate in,” provides Wallsten. He says that if a enterprise absolutely moves from outdoor the park to in the park then the net effect of the park is zero, even though the park can say it attracted a commercial enterprise.
To keep away from a number of these troubles, DBT is putting in a Biotechnology enterprise researchhelp Council (BIRAC), a society to be able to function alongside the equal traces as the software program generation Park of India which was instrumental in promoting India’s software program industryin its early years.
“The enterprise must have come ahead to set up this long in the past however now we’ve initiated theprocedure and within 3 months this ought to be instituted,” says Bhan. BIRAC may be funded by using thegovernment, and will act as DBT’s enterprise arm.